The second idea comes from a quote by Blaise Pascal, who once said, “Cleopatra's nose, had it been shorter, the whole face of the world would have been changed.” According to this idea, the course of history is determined by random events such as the length of someone’s nose, the assassination of the Archduke of Austria, and a monkey who bit the King of Greece.
The second narrative for the war comes from Britain, who argues that Jews secretly controlled the world. This narrative is believed by many on the Internet and by many people who live outside the West. Iran, for example, often blames the misfortunes of Muslims on Zionists, though when they say Zionists, they are referring to Jews, not Britons.
The third narrative is the one I have argued here, that the war was a conspiracy hatched by Britain, a conspiracy to steal the world’s largest supply of oil, a conspiracy to destroy the Muslim world, a conspiracy to prevent Muslims from reaping the benefits of their naturally abundant resources.
Now let’s determine which narrative seems most likely to be true.
If Jews secretly controlled the world, why did they instigate the Arab riots against themselves? One would think if Jews actually controlled the world, they would have the power to prevent others from speaking ill of them. In a poll conducted by the BBC, Britain was the third most popular country in the world. Israel, meanwhile, was near the bottom of the list, only in front of Iran, Pakistan, and North Korea. (www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-22624104) One would think if Jews wielded such tremendous power, they would not be so hated amongst the Muslims of the Middle East.
One of the reasons why the Israelis remain so unpopular is because they have been building settlements in the West Bank in an attempt to annex that territory from the Palestinians. But if the Jews were as powerful as their detractors say, they would have solved this problem in the beginning. Indeed, after World War I, the original plan was for the Jews to get all of modern day Israel, Palestine, and Jordan. (Page 512) But this plan was rejected by the British. If the Jews secretly controlled the world, this plan would have been implemented.
Take a look at the world’s largest oil companies - British Petroleum, Chevron, ExxonMobil, Royal Dutch Shell, and Total. One of those companies is French (Total). Two of those companies are American (ExxonMobil and Chevron). Two of those companies are British (British Petroleum and Royal Dutch Shell), though the second company is half British and half Dutch. None of them are Israeli. If Jews control the world, why do Europeans and Americans control the oil industry?
The British claim the Arab riots were a Jewish conspiracy against them. Historians like Fromkin acknowledge this claim is ridiculous but they insist that the British believed their conspiracy theories were true. Neither the British nor the historians are telling the truth. Their arguments are contradicted by the words and actions of the British themselves.
If the British believed in their conspiracy theories, why did Mark Sykes tell the French to deal with their colonies the same way Britain dealt with hers? Why did the British say they supported Arab independence? Why didn’t they install a British ruler in Iraq, in Jordan? Why did they install two Arabs instead? Why did the British, when it came time to defend their new colonies, why did they implement a plan which could not defend them against a foreign invasion, a plan which would only be useful in putting down a revolt? These actions show that the British knew the Arabs hated them. These actions show that the British were trying to fool the Arabs into believing that they had gained their independence, into believing that they were now ruled by their own people. When in reality, it was Britain pulling the strings, not only in Iraq and Jordan, but also in Russia. If the British could not control the Russians, they would have implemented a more robust defense plan which could have defended their new territories against a Russian invasion.
If the war was not a conspiracy to steal the world’s largest supply of oil, why did the British allow the Goeben to escape? If the war was not a British conspiracy, why did the British halt their attack on the Dardanelles right after the Ottomans ran out of ammo? Did the British suddenly forget that guns are useless without ammunition? Did they suddenly believe that throwing rocks was just as effective as shooting bullets?
Was Arnold Wilson, the man Britain put in charge of Iraq, simply being incompetent when he argued there was no way to ask the people of Iraq for their opinions on how to rebuild their government? Did he not know about the existence of translators? Did he not know that some humans can speak both Arabic and English? Or did he suddenly forget that humans have mouths and can speak, that they have ears and can listen? Perhaps the British did forget that humans have ears. Or perhaps their ears fell off their heads when that American missionary told them that the creation of Iraq went against four thousand years of history, when Colonel House told them their plans for the Middle East were awful. But the British, even without ears, still need to explain why they concocted their disastrous plan for the Middle East in the first place. Their ears were missing again when they decided the Mufti of Jerusalem should be a man in his twenties, a man who had been sentenced to 10 years in prison, a man who hated Jews.
For Britain, the goal was a weak, disunited Arabia. Was it through chance and incompetence that they achieved their goal? While London was busy telling Jews to move to Palestine, the British soldiers in Palestine were busy telling the Arabs to fight them. Why didn’t the British government stop their soldiers from encouraging the Arabs to riot? Did the British government forget that they could order their soldiers to implement their policy? That they could court-martial those soldiers for disobeying them?
Britain wanted a weak Arabia. Having the Arabs stuck in a permanent war against the Jews certainly weakened them. The war was a disaster for the Jews as well. Are we to believe that the British hurt the Jews, a people they hate, on accident? Remember it was David Lloyd George, the man ultimately responsible for Zionism, who did “not care a damn for the Jews or their past of their future.” Which seems more likely, that Britain mistakenly chose a course of action in complete accord with their values or that Britain is lying about their motives because they are evil and they are trying to hide their true nature from the rest of the world? I am not alone in questioning Britain’s motives for supporting Zionism. Back when Britain issued the Balfour Declaration, everyone was suspicious of Britain’s motives, particularly the Jews.
Why did Britain install a lazy and ineffective leader in Jordan? Why did they humiliate Feisal by allowing the Australians to march into Damascus first? Here again, the British achieved their goal - a weak Arabia - apparently through their “incompetence.”
The British achieved their other goal, a disunited Arabia, by backing several different Muslim groups and having them fight one another. On the Arabian Peninsula, the British India office backed Ibn Saud while the British Cairo office backed King Hussein. (Page 107) Both men received subsidies from the British government. Both men fought each other. One British official called this situation absurd. (Page 424) Fromkin would have you believe the British government was fighting amongst itself over how to resolve the situation. That’s a lie, a cover story to mask the real intentions of the British. Their goal was a weak, disunited Arabia. To achieve that goal, the British had the Arabs kill each other.
Ibn Saud won the battle for the Arabian peninsula and became the founder of a new state which bears his name - Saudi Arabia. King Hussein was sent into exile to live with his sons. Although the British allowed Ibn Saud to rule the Arabian peninsula, they had installed Abdullah and Feisal, the sons of King Hussein, in Jordan and Iraq, the two states that span the northern border of Saudi Arabia, the two states which connect Saudi Arabia to the rest of the world. For Abdullah and Feisal, Ibn Saud was their nemesis, the man who sent their father into exile. By installing Abdullah and Feisal in Jordan and Iraq, by installing Ibn Saud in Saudi Arabia, the British achieved their goal of a disunited Arabia. Does this sound like a coincidence to you?
By the way, this was not the only time the West pulled a stunt like this. The West has a habit of backing both sides of a conflict in order to kill Muslims and make them hate each other. The Iran-Iraq War was another example of this. During that war, which pitted the Iranians against the Iraqis, America provided assistance to both sides.
“At the same time we’re giving weapons to Iran in order to curry some kind of favor with them, we are at the same time providing intelligence to Iraq against Iran,” said Vincent Cannistraro, the former Chief of Operations and Analysis at the CIA. “So we’re seen playing both sides against the middle, and when this is finally revealed, it really exposes American hypocrisy and put us in a very bad light. The Iranians, for example, understand that, yes, we’re shipping them arms here at the same time we’re giving targeting information to the Iraqis so they can more precisely bomb targets in Iran. And from the Iraqi point of view and Saddam Hussein, he realizes that his erstwhile American friends are also arming his enemies.” (www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/target/interviews/cannistraro.html)
Those who believe that the British did not control Germany or America have to explain a few things. Why did the Germans have the Goeben fire on Odessa? That made the Ottomans look like the aggressors. The Germans could have easily had the Goeben sink a Russian military vessel. That would have allowed the Ottomans to claim self defense. Why did the Germans discredit the Ottomans, their allies? And later on in the war, why were the Germans so intent on provoking America into becoming their enemy?
Why didn’t America allow the Ottomans to surrender based on the Fourteen Points? Why, at the peace conference, did we focus on the imperial designs of France and Italy and ignore the imperial designs of Britain?
Why didn’t we force the British to repay the money we loaned them for the war? Over the course of the war, we loaned $10 billion to the Allies. (history.state.gov/milestones/1921-1936/Dawes) In those days, that was an incredible amount of money. Back then, the total size of the U.S. economy was only $60 billion. (www.forbes.com/sites/danielfisher/2013/01/15/so-called-debt-ceiling-has-risen-twice-as-fast-as-tax-receipts/) America loaned the Allies an amount of money equal to 16.7 percent of our economy. Today if we loaned Europe an amount of money equal to 16.7 percent of our economy, we would be loaning them $2.62 trillion. You would think, after having loaned such an enormous sum of money, we would do what it takes to get our money back. And yet, after the war, the only country to repay us was Finland.
You don’t, through incompetence, add a million square miles to your empire. You don’t, through incompetence or coincidence, seize the most oil rich lands in the world right after you learn how important oil is. Countries which go to war on little more than a whim, which kill millions of people because someone assassinated some archduke and his wife, such countries do not survive.
Throughout the war, Britain showed that their primary concern was stealing the oil of the Middle East. That is why, at the end of the war, they ordered their forces to “occupy as large a portion of the oil-bearing regions as possible.”
Every time the British were given a choice between peace and oil, the British chose oil. They did everything in their power to provoke the Ottomans into becoming their enemy. The British stole their ships. They prevented Ottoman ships from entering the Mediterranean. And they fired on the Ottomans to commence hostilities at the first opportunity. Britain could have kept the Ottomans out of the war if they wanted to. The Ottomans never wanted to join the war in the first place. In general, forcing other countries to become your enemy is a recipe for disaster. But Churchill knew the Ottomans were an exception, that fighting the Ottomans could bring enormous benefits to the British Empire. The British could annex their empire after the war. Britain chose oil over peace.
During the Armenian Massacres, the British were given an opportunity to end the killing and take the Ottomans out of the war. But the deal would have prevented the British from annexing the Middle East. The British rejected the deal. Oil was their most important consideration. The fate of the Armenians meant nothing to them.
After the war ended, when the people of Iraq began to riot against the tyranny of the British, David Lloyd George again faced the same choice, peace or oil. Either leave the Middle East, end the riots, or stay, endure the protests, and take the oil. He chose oil. He refused to abandon “some of the richest oilfields in the world.” Time and time again the British chose oil over peace.
World War I was neither the first nor the last time the many-headed monster made its appearance. For a more recent example, consider what the West is doing in Syria. America, Britain, and France are providing aid to the Syrian rebels while Russia is providing support to the Syrian government. The West refuses to provide enough support to enable the rebels to win which indicates that the West wants Syria to remain in a state of civil war. Thus far, over 100,000 Syrians have been killed.
The many-headed monster operates outside the Middle East too. The American Revolution was a sham. It allowed Britain and America to gain the appearance of enemies. This allowed them to defeat the Native Americans in the War of 1812. In the war, the British pretended to ally themselves with the Native Americans in their fight against the United States. But this was all a ruse, a ruse which allowed the British to infiltrate the Native American leadership. Historians record that neither the British nor the Americans lost the War of 1812. The Native Americans lost the war.
My critics will undoubtedly argue that I have failed to show how Britain controlled other countries. Although I do not have an exhaustive list of every person who was a secret agent of the British, I do know of a couple of examples. One example is Benito Mussolini. After World War I, when he began his rise to power, he railed against Britain for cheating Italy out of its portion of the Middle East. (Page 532) But in all likelihood, this was nothing more than theater. In the fall of 1917, British intelligence started paying Mussolini 100 pounds per week. The payments lasted at least a year. (www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/oct/13/benito-mussolini-recruited-mi5-italy) Chances are, Mussolini was still a British agent after the war. He was another head of their many-headed monster.
Mussolini was not the only fascist dictator brought to power by British intelligence. In Spain, they brought Francisco Franco to power. In 1936, Franco was living in exile on the Canary Islands. In the summer of that year, Hugh Pollard, a member of the British Secret Intelligence Service, transported Franco from the Canary Islands to Morocco. (www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2006/jul/18/post233) From there Franco hooked up with the Spanish troops stationed in Morocco and led them into battle against the Spanish government. A million Spaniards died in the hostilities.
In Japan, many of the ultranationalists who were involved in World War II were connected to American intelligence. One of those people was Nobusuke Kishi. After the war, he was imprisoned for three years. But after those three years, he was released. The CIA put him on their payroll. (Page 119 of Legacy of Ashes) He would eventually become the prime minister of Japan. Even while he was in prison, Kishi had powerful supporters in America. (Page 117 of Legacy of Ashes)
After the war, many of the ultranationalists, including Takushiro Hattori and Masanobu Tsuji, were employed by Charles Willoughby, the head of U.S. Army intelligence in Japan. Hattori was a former private secretary to Hideki Tojo. Tsuji was involved in the Bataan Death March. (www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2007/03/06/national/52-coup-plot-bid-to-rearm-japan-cia/)
It seems unlikely that the relationship between the ultranationalists and U.S. intelligence began after the war. If American intelligence had no relationship with those people during the war, they almost certainly would not have tried to form a relationship with them after the war. It makes little sense to hire people you just fought a war with. Under normal circumstances, the U.S. government would have simply executed those people. The fact that they didn’t, the fact that, instead, they decided to put those ultranationalists on their payroll, indicates that those ultranationalists were connected to U.S. intelligence during the war.
In many respects the Second World War was similar to the first. World War I was about the dissolution of the Ottoman Empire. World War II was about the dissolution of the Japanese Empire. But the aftermath of World War II was much different. The war resulted in the collapse of the British Empire as well. For more information about the Second World War, read this:
Another British agent was Allen Dulles, a member of the U.S. State Department. He supported British and French imperialism. He once argued that America would be hurt if Britain and France gave up their territories in the Middle East. (Page 535) During the Second World War, Dulles became a member of OSS. He was “strongly influenced” by Royall Tyler, another OSS official who also happened to be a British secret agent. (Appendix II, Page 2 of the Park Report) In 1953, Dulles became the director of the CIA. He would stay in that position for eight years, until 1961, which made him the longest serving CIA director in history. While at the CIA, Dulles continued to defend British interests, particularly when it came to Iran.
The Iranians knew that the British were taking their oil without adequately compensating them. And so in 1951, Mohammed Mossadeq, the Iranian Prime Minister, seized all of BP’s assets in Iran. The British were furious. They tried to convince America to remove Mossadeq but America refused. (www.nytimes.com/2010/06/17/opinion/17iht-edmeyer.html) The British had to settle for an embargo which prevented Iran from selling their oil to other countries. To compensate for the loss of oil output in Iran, other countries had to increase their production.
In 1953, the CIA, now under the direction of Allen Dulles, executed Operation Ajax, a coup which ousted Mossadeq and made the Shah the ruler of Iran. The British regained their assets. They wanted to restart their oil production in Iran. But there was a problem. The rest of the world had already compensated for the loss of Iranian oil production. If Iran raised their output, other countries would have to reduce their production.
The British had another problem. They could not restart oil production in Iran by themselves. The people of Iran would not accept that. The British needed other countries to participate in the Iranian oil industry. But American oil companies were not interested in Iran. (Page 472 of The Prize) They already had all the oil production they needed. However, due to pressure from the American and British governments, those companies reduced their output in other countries and invested in Iran.
“If the U.S. and British governments hadn’t really beat us on the head, we wouldn’t have gone back,” said Howard Page of Standard Oil of New Jersey. (Page 473 of The Prize)
BP sold sixty percent of their oil business in Iran to a group of European and American companies. (Page 478 of The Prize) Those companies paid BP $90 million up front and another $500 million over time. (Page 480 of The Prize)
“It was a wonderful deal for Fraser, the best deal Willie Fraser ever made,” declared John Loudon of Royal Dutch Shell. (William Fraser was the chairman of BP)
To control a country, you must control its people. To control its people, you must control its media. You can exert a great deal of control over another country then, if you can infiltrate its media. The American media is crawling with Britons. Every person in the following list is British.
Mark Thompson, the chief executive of the New York Times
Gerard Baker, the top editor of the Wall Street Journal
Joanna Coles, the editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan
Colin Myler, the editor of the New York Daily News
Anna Wintour, the editor of Vogue
Tina Brown, the editor of the Daily Beast and Newsweek
Nick Denton, who owns Gawker, Gizmodo, and Kotaku
Piers Morgan, a talk show host on CNN
Martin Bashir, the host of a political commentary show on MSNBC
Deborah Turness, the president of NBC News
Jon Williams, the head of international operations for ABC News
Paul Lee, the ABC Entertainment Group President
Mark Burnett, the producer of Survivor, The Apprentice, and The Voice
Nigel Lythgoe and Simon Fuller, the producers of American Idol and So You Think You Can Dance
Simon Cowell, the producer of American Idol and X Factor
Ironically, the one place where you can argue Britain was incompetent was the one place that prospered - Saudi Arabia. Britain believed they had to compensate Islam for destroying the Ottoman Empire, the last major independent Muslim power. (Page 140) Britain decided to make a new independent Muslim state, a state which would be located on the Arabian peninsula. The peninsula was a natural choice, as it contained the two holiest mosques for Muslims. But for Britain, there were more important considerations. According to Fromkin, the peninsula “was a territory that none of the Great Powers coveted.”
“It was too arid a country to make it worth the while of any ravenous Power to occupy as a permanent pasture,” said Lloyd George.
Britain did not believe the Arabian peninsula had oil. The peninsula had no other apparent resources. It seemed to be just barren desert. There was no reason for the British to try to make the peninsula poor. The peninsula would be poor regardless of how smart their leaders were, regardless of how united their people were. Forming a unified country out of that land seemed harmless. It wasn’t like Iraq which Britain knew had oil, which Britain made into a basket case for fear of her Muslims becoming rich and powerful.
Ibn Saud led a group of Bedouins called the Ikhwan. Fromkin called the Bedouins “the greatest warriors in Arabia.” (Page 425) Britain allowed Ibn Saud and his Ikhwan to conquer and unify the Arabian peninsula.
In 1926, British Petroleum declared that Saudi Arabia was “devoid of all prospects” for oil. (Page 284 of The Prize) Their lack of interest left the field open to their American competitors. Standard Oil of California bought the oil concession for Saudi Arabia in 1933. (Page 294 of The Prize). To develop their concession, the company formed a joint venture with Texaco. (Page 302 of The Prize) The venture was called Aramco. Five years later, in 1938, they found the oil they were looking for. (www.cnn.com/2003/US/03/10/sprj.80.1938.oil)
During World War II, the U.S. government sent a mission to the Middle East to determine how much oil the region had. The conclusions reached were astounding.
“The oil in this region is the greatest single prize in all history,” declared one official. (Page 395 of The Prize)
By the time World War II ended, Ibn Saud hated Britain. He absolutely refused to allow Britain to extract oil from his country. After the war, Standard Oil of California and Texaco wanted to expand Aramco by adding another two oil companies to the joint venture. Ibn Saud did not object to the expansion. But he had one absolute demand which could not be violated. Neither of the two additional companies could be British. (Page 417 of The Prize) His demand was met. The two additions to Aramco were Standard Oil of New York and New Jersey.
In Saudi Arabia, Britain did everything wrong. They appointed a leader who was indigenous to the region, which gave him legitimacy. They appointed a leader who was not weak, not feeble and they allowed him to conquer and unite his country. And they did everything they could to alienate him and drive him into the arms of the Americans. The results speak for themselves.
Today, Saudi Arabia is one of the richest countries in the world while Iraq has gone from one disaster to another. Had, in 1914, Britain known that Saudi Arabia sat on the largest deposit of oil in the world, Britain would have done everything in her power to make sure that the Arabian peninsula would look more like Iraq (a basket case) and less like Saudi Arabia (one of the richest countries on earth).
Part of the problem
Ironically, in his book, Fromkin once accused Mark Sykes of not understanding that other British officials kept their motives and plans secret. (Page 319) But it is Fromkin himself who does a poor job of discerning their motives and intentions. He sees incompetence where he should see evil.
You may be wondering why, in the face of so much information which shows that Britain’s actions are intentional, malicious, and evil, why do historians continue to paint them in such a favorable light? Consider the following passage.
“The establishment of Allied control in the Middle East marked the climax of Europe’s conquest of the rest of the world,” said Fromkin. “It was the last chapter in a tale of high adventure—of sailors daring to cross uncharted oceans, of explorers tracking rivers to their source, and of small bands of soldiers marching into the interior of unknown continents to do battle with the vast armies of remote empires.” (Page 558)
Instead of presenting the British as criminals, Fromkin presents them as adventurers. One might be tempted to say that Fromkin, like other western historians, is simply covering up the horrendous crimes of the British Empire. And yet throughout his book he includes the most damning information, such as the Colonel House quote about how Britain was making the Middle East a breeding place for future war. Fromkin includes all the information one needs to indict and condemn Britain but throughout his book he refuses to do so. Instead he has kind words for Britain. One is left with the impression that he knows exactly what Britain did and he supports it.
Fromkin called the war a “doubly crowning achievement” for Britain. (Page 558) Indeed the war was a "doubly crowning achievement,” at least from the twisted British perspective. Britain had set the stage for permanent revolution, permanent war, permanent misery for the Middle East forever.
The verdict for Winston Churchill
“Victory in the First World War brought the British Empire to its zenith: with the addition of the territories it had occupied in the Middle East and elsewhere, it had become larger than it—or any other empire—had ever been before.”
– David Fromkin (Page 383)
If you still don’t believe that World War I was a conspiracy hatched by Britain, consider the fate of Winston Churchill. The war was a litmus test for him. When either the credit or the blame for the war must be assessed, much of it must be placed on his shoulders. If Britain viewed the war as a catastrophe, then Britain should have banished Churchill from office forever. But if Britain wanted to seize the world’s largest supply of oil, then they should have rewarded him.
After all it was Winston Churchill who switched the British Navy from coal to oil right before the war. It was Winston Churchill who provoked the Ottomans time and again into allying themselves with Germany, first by seizing their battlecruisers, then by blocking Ottoman ships from entering the Mediterranean. It was Churchill who ordered the British Navy to fire on the Ottomans. It was Churchill who extolled the benefits of having the Ottomans as enemies, of having the right to chop up and seize their empire. It was Churchill who once declared that the creation of a Jewish state in the Middle East “would be especially in harmony with the truest interests of the British Empire.” (Page 519) Let us now ascertain what those interests were, as seen from the perspective of the British. Was it to avoid a war? Or was it to steal the world’s largest supply of oil and put the Middle East on a permanent course of misery?
Churchill lost his seat in Parliament in November 1922.
“In 1922 it was almost universally agreed in Britain that Churchill was politically finished,” said Fromkin.
But only two years later he would return to Parliament as Chancellor of the Exchequer, the second highest position in the British government. Upon learning the news, George Lambert wrote him a note which said, “Winston my boy, I have got a fair instinct for politics. I think I shall live to see you Prime Minister.” (Page 567) His prediction came true. Churchill served as the British prime minister twice, first from 1940 to 1945, and then later from 1951 to 1955.
While in the short term Britain made it appear as though they had punished Churchill for the catastrophe that had just unfolded, a few years later Britain would show their true colors by bringing him back into the fold, which shows that they really loved what he did during the so-called Great War.